Saturday, December 19, 2015

Judiciary must be fearless, independent

Judiciary must be fearless, independent, says retired judge

Retired Court of Appeal judge Datuk Mohd Hishamudin Mohd Yunus says judgeship is a public trust. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, December 19, 2015.Retired Court of Appeal judge Datuk Mohd Hishamudin Mohd Yunus says judgeship is a public trust. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, December 19, 2015.The position of a judge is one of public trust and on no account should that trust be betrayed, retired Court of Appeal judge Datuk Mohd Hishamudin Mohd Yunus said today.
He also told the audience at a forum that judges should be courageous and assert their independence in carrying out their duties.
"What do the judges want? They want to be respected or they want to be looked down upon by the citizens?
 "It is true that there's a powerful executive to contend with, who has the power of appointment, promotion and even removal of judges in some cases," he said, in answer to a question from the audience on how to protect judges from being victimised.

Hishamudin said the threat of being victimised should not be reason for judges to refuse to assert their independence.
"A person who is meek should not accept the appointment to be a judge.
"Judgeship is a public trust and this trust must not be betrayed," he said.
He added that the risks were always there but should not hinder judges from carrying out their duties.
"We have injustices done by the executives to independent judges.
"But a ruthless executive would never be able to emasculate the judiciary by victimising judges," he said at the forum titled "Whither the Federal Constitution – Do fundamental and minority rights matter?", organised by the Bar Council in Kuala Lumpur. – December 19, 2015.

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